Total Marine Technology (TMT) and French company ECA GROUP have signed an MoU to team for the unmanned elements of the Royal Australian Navy’s Project SEA 1905 Phase 1 – Tranche 1 program Maritime Mine Countermeasures and Military Survey Capability.
In a joint release, the team says both companies are experienced in providing robotics equipment for maritime environments in the Defence and Security domain, and that they believe they can provide the most competitive and technologically advanced solution for SEA 1905.
“We are extremely happy to team with TMT, to strengthen our position in the southern hemisphere and specifically Australia, and to contribute to a sustainable Australian SEA 1905 Tranche 1 program,” Daniel Scourzic, VP for Strategic Programs at ECA GROUP said in a joint statement.
“Our aim is to share and implement our expertise together with TMT in order to provide the Royal Australian Navy with sea proven, state of the art technologies tailored to their operational needs and to adapt the system over time to take into account the evolving threat as well as new technologies as they become available,” Scourzic added.
CEO of TMT Paul Colley added, “We believe the linking with ECA Group is a significant event which will unlock opportunities in the defence sector, through the provision of focussed and well implemented new technologies. The strengths of both companies are well suited to providing an integrated solution to address the rapidly developing area of undersea capability.
“To work collaboratively with the ECA GROUP is a real win for TMT,” Colley added. Their world leading technology in this sector will further enhance our ability to generate new skills and jobs as we seek to strengthen and diversify our core capability for future growth.”
The SEA 1905 Maritime Mine Countermeasures (MCM) requirement was announced in April 2019 to replace the RAN’s four remaining Huon-class Minehunter Coastal (MHC) ships. In January 2021, former Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds announced the new vessels would be based on the Arafura class offshore patrol vessel (OPV), and that they will be designed to employ modular autonomous systems for mine-hunting and military survey capabilities.
The RFT for SEA 1905 Phase 1 Tranche 1 is expected to be released later this year, second pass is expected in late 2022, service introduction in 2023/2024, and initial operational capability (IOC) in late 2024.